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February 25, 2009


I'm one of the producers of the Bridgetown Comedy Festival in my hometown of Portland, OR. Basically, it's a grassroots festival created to celebrate comedy as we (the other producers, fans, and comedians involved) enjoy it (smart and original), and to celebrate the city that we love, Portland. This year will be the second time we put it up. Last year was incredible and I'm amazed it even happened. Just because it's an incredible undertaking to create, build, and organize a festival. BUT it probably happened mostly because I wasn't that involved.
See, what I do for the fest is bring in people I know and/or work with. For example, one person I got on board this year is Janeane Garofalo. She and I have performed together and are new friends. She's perfect because while being hilarious, she's also a recognizable performer that will bring people to the fest. Last year one big problem was publicity. One reporter didn't see what "the hook" was for the fest. "The hook?" we replied. "The hook is that it's the first and only comedy festival in Portland. We have performers from Los Angeles, Chicago, New York, parts of Canada, and everywhere in between (Dummy!)." He wanted to interview one of our comedians, but wanted to focus on her being a lesbian. She refused, understandably. Guess she wanted to be recognized for her humor rather than her sexuality. What a weirdo. This year, having people like Janeane and the improv group Beersharkmice (featuring "Anchorman"'s David Koechner and "Scrubs" Neil Flynn), we can jump past dipshits like that reporter. "The hook" is that it's awesome.

That said, my job is incredibly easy. Andy Wood, the creator and head producer (and a damn fine comedian himself) does most of the heavy lifting. He and the others involved put a crapload of time and effort into building Bridgetown. I was on the phone with him yesterday and we're announcing the line-up this Monday. We've got around (I think?) 60 acts. It'll be over three days and, because none of us make any money on this and we've got some incredible sponsors, it'll be very affordable. You'll be able to buy a pass for the night or a pass for the fest. Prices will be announced Monday too. They'll all be along the same street, so you can bounce around from show to show, getting drinks and beers as you go. 

Trust me, if it's anything like last year, it'll be a blast. Actually, probably even more of one. If you've ever been to Portland, you know how fun it is. If you've never been, the fest would be a great time.

Bridgetown Comedy Festival
Several Venues (TBA)
April 23rd to the 26th